People 6 minutes 17 February 2022

5 MICHELIN-Starred Restaurant Chefs Share Their Favourite Champagne Moments with Perrier-Jouët

There is always a reason for celebration, and what better drink to accompany life’s magical moments with than champagne? Five MICHELIN-starred restaurant chefs share their most memorable champagne moments with Perrier-Jouët.

Michelin Star Champagne Michelin Guide Singapore 2021

Life is made up of everyday magical moments and of celebrations big and small. Life is also meant to be enjoyed vivaciously, passionately, and deliciously. This is why when Pierre-Nicolas Perrier and Rose-Adélaïde Jouët founded Maison Perrier-Jouët, they were on a mission to create a champagne house with a difference.

Apart from their shared love for champagne, the couple also had a penchant for the arts and nature; hence, exhibiting an air of creative freedom and an inquisitive perspective towards nature, specifically botanicals, has always been a huge part of Perrier-Jouët’s brand philosophy up to this day.

A must-have for every occasion and in any season, champagne is often associated with carefreeness and joie de vivre. We asked five MICHELIN-Starred restaurant chefs about their most memorable champagne moments, and how champagne has played a huge role in their gastronomy and careers.

Chef Julien Royer of 3 Star Odette
Chef Julien Royer of 3 Star Odette

Julien Royer
3 MICHELIN Stars, MICHELIN Guide Singapore 2021

“When I think of my favourite champagne moment, there are many — often to mark milestones with my wife or victories with the team,” says Royer. “But one particular memory that makes me laugh to this day was during a champagne tasting at hospitality school many years ago,” the French chef fondly recalls.

“Midway through our wine lessons, our instructor rushed to the hospital as his wife was about to give birth, leaving our class of budding wine enthusiasts unattended, with over 12 rather exciting champagne bottles,” Royer says excitedly. “Needless to say, we took it upon ourselves to finish the tasting. By the time a supervisor was tasked to take over, he was greeted by a very happy classroom filled with high-spirited students and emptied bottles. It was a lot of fun.”

Royer shares that for him, champagne has always been a symbol of celebration. “The head-turning ‘pop’ of the cork, the shimmer in the pour, the fine bubbles in the glass — no matter how you might be feeling, it immediately lifts the spirits and puts you in a celebratory mood!” he adds.

“Champagne is a reminder for everyone to share in a moment of pleasure and to toast to life’s special moments. There’s never a bad moment for it!”

For Royer, he prefers champagne as an apéritif and enjoys pairing it with savoury snacks. “It’s why we insist on our signature champagne trolley at Odette. It’s central to the welcome service. A champagne’s acidity and fine bubbles bring a touch of lightness, especially when savoured with 36-month aged Comté,” he recommends.

Apart from Odette, Royer has also recently opened restaurant Claudine atop Dempsey Hill, where he recommends a glass of Perrier-Jouët’s Blanc de Blancs alongside the L'Oreiller — a rustic Lyon speciality of pork, duck, and foie gras en croûte (baked in a pastry crust). “Champagne can really open up the palate and is a great way to start a meal,” Royer says. “When it comes to Perrier-Jouët’s champagnes, I like the rare finesse, the elegance, the delicate floral notes, and the creamy finish of the Belle Epoque range. They are a wonderful match for seafood, especially when it’s prepared with an added citrus component such as yuzu, grapefruit, or bergamot.”

Paul Longworth
Rhubarb Le Restaurant
1 MICHELIN Star, MICHELIN Guide Singapore 2021

“One of my fondest memories of champagne was when I first tried it with strawberries and cream,” Longworth reminisces. “No doubt, it would have been during a British summer with Wimbledon going on. The combination is so simple, yet so clever. I love it! It's a cliché that truly works.”

“I honestly believe that champagne is a truly special drink. It's crisp, fresh, exciting, and uplifting. I really couldn't think of a better drink to celebrate life with.”

“When it comes to Perrier-Jouët champagnes, I believe the Blanc de Blancs and Belle Epoque ranges offer something different from each other. The Blanc de Blancs range definitely can be drunk on its own and enjoyed as is, while the Belle Epoque certainly has more complexity as it really holds up to food pairing and bold flavours,” he says.

At 1 MICHELIN Star Rhubarb at Duxton Hill, the restaurant serves French classics, with a hot foie gras dish with smoked hamachi, bergamot, and horseradish being Longworth’s top pick to pair with champagne. “It’s really a winner as the champagne’s effervescence adds a different dimension to the dish. Also, rhubarb enjoyed with champagne is an amazing combination,” he says.

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David Thien
Corner House
1 MICHELIN Star, MICHELIN Guide Singapore 2021

When asked about his favourite memory involving champagne, Thien gives a hearty laugh as he recounts it. “It was my last day in The St. Regis Singapore — my first job here in the Lion City. It was a Sunday, and I had a final reunion with my first restaurant manager over brunch. He placed a glass of champagne rosé on the pass and told me it will be refilled with a smile. And indeed, it kept refilling. I usually don’t like drinking on a work day, but to be honest, the champagne made the day magical as it was a day to celebrate. I remember enjoying my last service in the company of my lovely colleagues. Some ‘last days at work’ can be exciting, plain, or boring. I believe the champagne made mine amazing.”

“The magic of champagne is in the bubbles. It’s twice as hard to produce good wines and good bubbles. It’s the mark of greatness, talent, and savoir-faire. Voila.”

Thien confesses: “I’m a glutton. In my own way, I enjoy eating and drinking in volume — and I consume very quickly. In a fine-dining setup, I especially enjoy champagne with canapés. The acidity and the light bubbles always go very well with the first bites. It’s the greatest start of an opulent moment. I also love the Perrier-Jouët Blanc de Blancs range. It’s my favourite champagne selection. It’s light, crisp, refreshing, yet smooth. I find it extremely enjoyable, and I appreciate it best with friends. Lots of friends and lots of champagne make up the best company.”

Jeremy Gillon
Restaurant JAG
1 MICHELIN Star, MICHELIN Guide Singapore 2021

Jeremy Gillon of 1-Star JAG has a treasure trove of memories that involve champagne, but amongst the throng of moments, two in particular stand out. “When I was chef de partie at Les Loges in Lyon, I remember the day we found out we received a MICHELIN Star. As a young chef, it made such a huge emotional impact on me, seeing that it was a moment of immense joy for the whole team. We were over the moon!” he exclaims. “I recall Nicolas Lebec, who was the chef then, bringing out a few bottles of champagne to share this exceptional moment with the whole team. During this time, I was new to champagne and didn’t know how to truly appreciate it. I don’t even remember the champagne we drank, but in my memory, it was the best champagne I had as it was filled with joy, happiness, and jubilation.”

According to Gillon: “This memory of champagne is only superseded by that fateful day when my partner at Restaurant JAG, Anant Tyagi, and I were graced with our first MICHELIN Star back in 2019. These memories will live with me forever. ”

“As a chef, I have had the privilege of being in so many opportune moments where champagne has created a very big memory for me. Champagne brings a sense of celebration with each moment.”

“To me, I personally believe the link between champagne and celebrations has to do with two things. The popping of the cork, which has become synonymous with celebrations, and the bubbles in the beverage, which provide a special experience on the palate,” he adds.

“Historically, champagne has been used to mark so many important occasions. As humans, we are greatly influenced by history, so that special association has not only remained but also gotten stronger.”

At Restaurant JAG, vegetables take the centerstage, and Gillon personally finds that vegetables with earthier flavours pair best with champagne as they contrast the champagne’s delicate notes. “This leads to each bite and each sip being amazing,” he adds.

“Blanc de Blancs is my favourite expression of champagne, as I feel Chardonnay is such a versatile grape, and depending on its source and its clone, it can produce so many versatile styles of champagne,” Gillon explains. “Perrier-Jouët Blanc de Blancs is simply fresh with mineral undertones — I love this balance.”

Gillon also praises the Perrier-Jouët Belle Epoque as a class of its own. “...particularly the Belle Epoque Blanc de Blancs, which is both Anant’s and my favourite at the present moment. It’s currently our go-to champagne in times of celebration. The exceptional balance of acidity, minerals, and white fruits is sublime. We absolutely love it.”

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Richard van Oostenbrugge
1 MICHELIN Star, MICHELIN Guide Singapore 2021

“I always say it’s important to create memories to capture the special moments in life’s journey,” says van Oostenbrugge. “Among my favourite memories involving champagne are receiving MICHELIN Stars for Restaurant 212 in Amsterdam and Table65 in Singapore. And, of course, the birth of my two lovely kids. They are wonderful and unforgettable lifetime experiences.”

“Champagne pairs well with several of my signature dishes on Table65’s menu,” van Oostenbrugge shares. “The langoustine poached in duck fat, cous cous of basmati rice, and Dover sole confit in roasted garlic oil are a few,” he says.

“Champagne is, for me, a celebration drink with my family or friends. However, I also like to drink it whenever I want. Don’t we need to celebrate life often?”

“What I like the most about Perrier-Jouët’s Blanc de Blancs range are the floral notes and the fine, crisp acidity, along with the purity of freshness. The mousse of the champagne’s bubbles is very smooth. It’s an easy choice of drink for any celebration, or simply whenever I feel like drinking it with the company of my wife.”

Experience Perrier-Jouët’s The Art of Wine Dinner with table65 from 01 March to 31 March 2022

Praised by our MICHELIN inspectors for putting gastronomic fun above stiff, fine-dining etiquette, Table65 takes its cue from its Dutch fast-casual sister, Restaurant 212 in Amsterdam, and is named after Singapore’s area code (65). Located at Resorts World Sentosa, Table65’s dining room draws attention to its big, open kitchen, where premium ingredients like lobster, caviar, and foie gras are turned into modern culinary gems.

From 01 March to 31 March 2022, Perrier-Jouët celebrates The Art of Wine alongside one-MICHELIN-Starred Table65 in a series of champagne pairing dinners to be held at the restaurant’s main dining room. For S$388++ per head, enjoy a five-course meal that includes a curated selection of Perrier-Jouët champagnes. On selected evenings, private dinner sessions will be hosted in Table65’s private dining room with Singapore’s Perrier-Jouët brand ambassador, Alson Tian. Learn more about this very special dinner and book your seats here.


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